THE RECENT anti-intervention convergence on Alice Springs has galvanised the commitment of activists to step up the fight against the NT intervention. The Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney (STICS) has called for a rally on December 13 to coincide with international human rights day, and will be seeking endorsements from unions, human rights organisations, community organisations and the local Indigenous community.
This renewed energy could not have come at a better time. Jenny Macklin has overridden even the ambivalent recommendations of the hand picked review team, announcing that the compulsory income management and suspension of the Racial Discrimination Act would continue for another 12 months.
The review team aimed to garner more support for the intervention. The report admitted the sense of injustice and racial discrimination felt by affected Aboriginal people, but it framed this as an outcome of mere ineffectiveness, as opposed to the inevitable fallout out of the intentional destruction of Aboriginal communities.
The review argues that the intervention can be reformed to promote human rights. However, any obscurity hanging over the real purpose of the intervention has now been clarified, as Macklin continues with the policies without even a charade of resetting the relationship between Aboriginal people and the Australian government.
It is important that in the lead up to the December 13 rally, Stop the Intervention activists continue to argue that the very logic of the intervention is an attack on human rights, and that no variation on income management, land acquisition or punitive social policies will rectify the history of dispossession that so many people want to see put right.
A fight against the intervention, and for community controlled infrastructure and funding, is the first step in establishing human rights for all Aboriginal people, the first real step in resetting the relationship between Aboriginal people and the Australian government.
By Lucy Honan
Rally 10am Saturday December 13
The Block, Redfern, Sydney
Ring 0415 410 558 for info on rallies in other cities